Nikki arrived at the PRC in October 2019 at less than one year old after being confiscated as an illegal pet from a home in Charles County, Maryland. After being cared for by the Maryland zoo during the state’s legal holding period for confiscated animals, Nikki was transferred to the Primate Rescue Center where she can enjoy the comforts of sanctuary life. Because she was only 4 months old, her care plan had to be specialized to meet her age-specific needs. While Nikki was settling in and adapting to her new home, we began evaluating companionship opportunities for her. Initially, she was introduced to Saidah Barbary macaque. However, Nikki found Saidah to be a little too big and intimidating. Our next option was with another monkey who had also spent time around other baby monkeys – Dewey rhesus macaque. Dewey and his companion Bubbles long-tailed macaque received Nikki into their home with open arms and eagerly began grooming, playing, and cuddling with her. With Dewey and Bubbles as her surrogate parents, Nikki now has the comfort and love needed to mend her tiny heart after being taken from her real monkey mother and sold into the pet trade when she was just a few days old. Nikki is very energetic but also loves to have a nice nap wrapped up inside her favorite blankets. She likes to play with toys that rattle and make noise, and her favorite foods are mangos and popcorn.

These are a Few of Their Favorite Things

We are always looking for exciting enrichment items and encouraging our staff, volunteers, and interns to get creative when enriching the primates’ homes, but there are a few tried and true things that will never get old and can be used in various enrichment projects.

Saving Endangered Bonobos Teaches A Lesson In Empathy

At an animal sanctuary in the Congo, several dozen Congolese schoolchildren are getting a crash course in bonobos. These gentle, endangered apes, who resemble chimpanzees, are "our closest cousins," educator Blaise Mbwaki tells the students in French. "They have a human character, and they are Congolese."

We’re Not the Only Animals Who Feel Grief and Spirituality

It's clear that humans are not the only animals who experience grief and loss and it's narrowly and anthropocentrically arrogant to think we are.1 Along these lines, a new and wide-ranging transdisciplinary book titled Enter the Animal: Cross-species perspectives on grief and spirituality by Dr. Teya Brooks Pribac, an independent scholar and multidisciplinary artist who lives in the Australian Blue Mountains with sheep and other animals, convincingly argues that nonhumans experience loss and embodied experiences, and so do we because we're also animals.

Chimpmas Day Festivities Wrap Up

Thanks to our generous donors, Primate Pals and friends of the PRC who donated tons of toys, gifts and tasty snacks, the chimps and monkeys had an awesome time last month opening all of their presents on “Chimpmas” day.

No more cuddly selfies with our ape cousins, top conservation body warns scientists

The global authority on wildlife protection wants scientists to quit cuddling monkeys on Instagram, holding hands with orangutans in films, and palling around with chimpanzees in publicity photos. In a new set of guidelines released last week, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) called on scientists, students, conservationists, and caretakers to stop publishing images that depict themselves in close contact with nonhuman primates.